Fresh Growth

Fresh Growth

Fresh Growth: Approaches to a More Sustainable Future from Western Ag Practitioners introduces you to farmers and ranchers from around the western United States who are finding innovative sustainable practices that enrich the natural resources we all care about. These successful multi-generational operations experiment with new ideas and are making it pay. Listen in as they tell their story and provide advice for young or beginning farmers.Western SARE, funded by USDA NIFA, provides grants and education to advance innovations in sustainable agriculture. Intro music credit: Organic Energy by Kensington Studios used under license from Shutterstock. Learn more about Western SARE at western.sare.org

Episodes

April 26, 2022 33 min

Today’s guests are Tangy and Matt Bates who operate Blue Creek Livestock in Delta Junction Alaska. They aim to provide their community with fresh, natural meat – beef, lamb, and pork. Since the beginning, Blue Creek Cattle has been building soils and herds. 

Tangy and Matt talk about the opportunities and challenges of farming in Alaska.  The opportunities are plentiful, providing farmers and ranchers with room for creativity and pr...

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Dan Macon is a University of California Farm Adviser and also the operator of Flying Mule Farm in Auburn California. Ryan Mahoney is a fifth-generation sheep and cattle rancher who operates Emigh Livestock, in Rio Vista California. Dan and Ryan are also participating in a Western SARE project demonstrating and evaluating how information from both electronic identification tags and better understanding of sheep genetics could be imp...

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In Episode 4, we talk with Zach Thode and Elizabeth Black.

Zach manages a large cattle ranch in Livermore Colorado. Elizabeth is an artist in Colorado and manages a Christmas tree farm. 

Elizabeth is also the project leader for The Citizen Science Soil Health Project, partially funded by a Western SARE grant and Zach is a producer participant in that project. The Citizen Science Soil Health Project is a grower-driven project which us...

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In this episode, we talk with Don McNamara and Donna Rae Faulkner from Oceanside Farms in Homer Alaska. They raise a wide variety of vegetables, fruits, berries, and chickens, ducks and turkeys. They grow all of their produce and nine varieties of Alaska Certified Seed Potatoes without the use of synthetically based chemicals, pesticides, fungicides, or fertilizers.  The farm serves their local market.

Don and Donna Rae practice Sma...

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Today’s episode features Bashira Muhammad, founder of Zoom Out Mycology as she talks about “Driving Sustainability with Fungi!” Zoom Out Mycology is a fungi farm based in Southern Oregon.   Their mission is to apply mycology towards a sustainable future.

When asked “How does fungi save the planet,” Bashira lists “so many ways!”  She and her team focus on medicinal mushroom teas for holistic health, small batch sawdust production so ...

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Austin Allred, talking about his family's Royal Dairy in Washington,  proudly states that rather than contributing to climate change, Royal Dairy shows that farms like his can be an impactful part of the solution — in part by preventing the formation of greenhouse gases and boosting the capacity of his soil to draw down and sequester atmospheric carbon.  

In this episode, Austin shares his passion and knowledge about the relatio...

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January 17, 2022 13 min

 Western SARE completed our second season of Fresh Growth. Thank you for listening! As we are working toward Season 3, we are sharing some special podcasts by Washington State University students. 

In this episode, you'll hear from 5th generation farmer Allen Druffel, Bar Star Farm, as he talks about their use of no-till practices since the 1990s.

Student team:  Kayleigh Brown, Mathew Morse, Mackenzie Cunningham, Martha Lum 

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January 17, 2022 13 min

 Western SARE completed our second season of Fresh Growth. Thank you for listening! As we are working toward Season 3, we are sharing some special podcasts created by Washington State University students.

In this podcast, you'll hear from Shepherd's Grain  COO and Director of R&D Jeremy Bunch. He discusses what makes Shepherd's Grain unique and how they work with no-till wheat farmers.  The model links farmers with c...

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March 6, 2021 10 min

Western SARE completed our second season of Fresh Growth. Thank you for listening! As we are working toward Season 3, we are sharing some special podcasts. These podcasts were created by students in the Washington State University’s Systems Skills for Agriculture and Food Systems class. The students interviewed producers on topics such as regenerative agriculture, permaculture, marketing, economics, technology and more. We hope you...

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Western SARE completed our second season of Fresh Growth. Thank you for listening! As we are working toward Season 3, we are sharing some special podcasts. These podcasts were created by students in the Washington State University’s Systems Skills for Agriculture and Food Systems class. The students interviewed producers on topics such as regenerative agriculture, permaculture, marketing, economics, technology and more. We hope you...

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February 19, 2021 16 min

Western SARE completed our second season of Fresh Growth. Thank you for listening! As we are working toward Season 3, we are sharing some special podcasts. These podcasts were created by students in the Washington State University’s Systems Skills for Agriculture and Food Systems class. The students interviewed producers on topics such as regenerative agriculture, permaculture, marketing, economics, technology and more. We hope you...

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February 5, 2021 48 min

Today’s guest is Nathan Hodges, who along with his wife Sage Dilts, runs Barn Owl Bakery on Lopez Island, Washington. He discusses why they are farming and sourcing heritage grains and using them in their baked goods; how the grains are processed locally; how the community plays a big role in their success; the results of his Western SARE research project; and what “right livelihood” means to them.

The bakery came first, and then th...

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Today’s guest is Mike Nolan who, along with Mindy Perkovich, farms in the Mancos Valley in Southwest Colorado. Mountain Roots Produce provides the local and regional community high quality and reasonably priced vegetables.

Mike discusses their commitment to building soil health, a strong local food system, and a profitable business, all while facing challenges brought on by COVID and limited water in the high desert climate.

Prior to...

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Sally Gale, who along with husband Mike, operates Chileno Valley Ranch in Marin County California. She and Mike returned to the family ranch in 1993, restoring buildings, infrastructure, and the land. They planted hundreds of apple and pear trees and started a grass-fed beef business selling directly to the local community.

Sally discusses how they learned by reaching out to family ranchers, NRCS, ag extension, and the Marin Resourc...

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Chris Sayer is a successful fifth generation farmer in Ventura County. He grows citrus and avocados, and experiments with other specialty crops such as figs, persimmons, apples, and apricots. Chris returned to the family farm in 2001 and has become passionate about soil health and regenerative agriculture.   

“I inherited well-maintained but old trees. So I’ve had to look down the road, replace trees, and get set up for the next 30-...

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In this episode, Emily Cornell and Sarah Bangert discuss prescriptive grazing effects on rangeland.  

Emily is a cow-calf rancher with Sol Ranch and Cornell Ranch in Northeastern New Mexico. She markets grass fed beef and also manages an apprenticeship program for beginning ranchers. She talks about the importance of soil health, especially in an area with limited water, as well as impacts on processing and marketing due to COVID-19...

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Today’s guest is Taylor Larson, who along with his two brothers and parents, operates My Brothers’ Farm in the Willamette Valley of Oregon.

First generation farmers, they raise bison, pigs, and hazelnuts on the land on which they were raised.

Taylor describes creating effective frameworks to determine a vision of regenerative agriculture with multiple partners and the importance of returning to the frameworks for decision-making.

&...

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Western SARE completed our first season of Fresh Growth. Thank you for listening! As we are working toward Season 2, we are sharing some special podcasts. These podcasts were created as a senior project in Montana State University's Sustainable Food & Bioenergy Systems class.

In this podcast, Jill Falcon Mackin, doctoral candidate at Montana State University, discusses Food Sovereignty for indigenous people. From the Turtle ...

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Western SARE completed our first season of Fresh Growth. Thank you for listening! As we are working toward Season 2, we are sharing some special podcasts. These podcasts were created as a senior project in Montana State University's Sustainable Food & Bioenergy Systems class.

In this episode, student Nathaniel Bowman talks with Rocky Creek Farm's co-founder Matt Rothschiller about small scale vegetable production, integ...

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Aaron and Hansel Kern are owners along with Sue and Rebecca Kern, of Kern Family Farm. The multi-generational farm is located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California.

In this episode,you’ll hear about their passion for community and conservation; trials with no-till and cover cropping; and the transition to the next generation.

The farm is certified organic and they use regenerative farming practices. The Kern...

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